Information and the Future

This is the blog of the Information and the Future task force of the Rolfing Library at Trinity International University. The IF task force exists to explore the role of libraries in the future of Christian higher education.

Friday, March 20, 2009

Cyberbully attacks Dead Sea Scroll scholars

The Chronicle of Higher Ed has an article about a cyberbully who was using different aliases to attack Dead Sea Scroll scholars on blogs and via email. He is the son of a Dead Sea Scroll scholar, and was using this method to try to defend his father's views and attack his opponents. One of the scholars he attacked was an IT person, who tracked him using the IP addresses of the different aliases. The cyberbully also impersonated another scholar and sent email messages with his name.

I don't know enough about the Dead Sea Scroll debate to know which side we would agree with, but one of the attacks charged that there was a "Christian agenda" to an exhibit (apparently a horrible charge!).

It reminded me of Lee Seigel's complaints about anonymity on the web. I was a little curious why the scholars involved were so concerned about this, when they should know the web isn't reliable anyway and are full of flame wars. But they said that the web can influence people who don't know a lot about the topic. There was also a comment that scholars should take more responsibility to use the web to educate the public with accurate information. -Of course, it would help if they could prove they are who they say they are and aren't being impersonated!

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